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Message from the Vice Chancellor for Research, March 27, 2020

March 27, 2020

Thanks to all who have “ramped down” their research programs over this past week! We all know this is a very difficult thing for all of us who are passionate about our research and many of us are grieving. If you are at home, you can take this time to do many things you don’t have time for during your normally busy days. For some, you may find this a rare opportunity to slow down, and think deeply about your science. There are changes being made to the designations of  “essential” and “non-essential” research personnel, and we are adding a “backup to essential” personnel category. More clarity about the role of trainees as “essential” personnel will be coming soon. Faculty, work with your department administrators to develop your personnel lists, and communicate your plans with your research team. 

Aside from COVID-19 work, no new experiments should be started. We are in essential maintenance, pause, and wind-down mode. We have been informed by the city of St. Louis that “essential” research personnel should not need letters to travel to and from campus. However, many will feel more comfortable with a letter in their car. Letters for essential personnel have been sent to departments for distribution. Researchers should follow the social distancing (6 feet) and hand hygiene guidelines that are being posted around campus. Importantly, practice social distancing in elevators – specific guidance for elevators is coming soon. Do not come to campus if you are ill.

Jennifer K. Lodge, PhD
Vice Chancellor for Research
Washington University